Okay, I’m normally used to using green tomatoes, but wow, did these taste even better!

Servings: 4-6
– 4 large ripe red tomatoes, sliced about 1/2 inch thick
– 1 cup all-purpose flour
– 2 large eggs, beaten
– 1 cup cornmeal
– 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
– 2 teaspoons salt, more for seasoning
– 1 teaspoon black pepper, more for seasoning
– 1/4 teaspoon paprika (optional for a hint of spice)
– Vegetable oil, for frying
1. Place the flour, beaten eggs, and a mix of cornmeal and panko breadcrumbs into three separate shallow bowls. Stir salt, pepper, and paprika into the cornmeal and breadcrumb mixture for even seasoning.
2. Dip tomato slices first into the flour, ensuring both sides are lightly coated. Shake off any excess.
3. Submerge the floured tomato into the beaten eggs, letting any excess drip off.
4. Lastly, press each slice into the cornmeal and breadcrumb combination, coating both sides well for a crisp exterior.
5. Fill a large skillet with vegetable oil, about 1/2-inch deep, and heat over medium flame until hot but not smoking.
6. Carefully place tomato slices in the skillet without overcrowding, and fry until golden brown — roughly 2-3 minutes on each side.
7. Use a slotted spoon to transfer them to a wire rack or plate lined with paper towels to drain. Season lightly with a bit more salt and pepper while they’re still warm.

8. Serve immediately while they’re at their crispiest best!
Variations & Tips:
– For a gluten-free option, substitute all-purpose flour with your favorite gluten-free flour blend, and use gluten-free breadcrumbs.
– If you’re watching your oil intake, try a “fry” in the air fryer. You’ll still achieve that lovely crisp without all the oil.
– Don’t hesitate to experiment with seasonings in the breadcrumb mixture. Adding herbs like oregano, basil, or thyme can bring a delightful aromatic twist to the tomatoes.
– If there are any leftovers, which I doubt there will be, they can be reheated in the oven to bring back some of the crispiness.
– As always, the joy of cooking is making it your own, so feel free to adjust and add to this recipe as you find fit to suit your family’s taste. Teach the kids to dip and coat the tomato slices – it’s a fun way to get them involved and learning their way around the kitchen!

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